New Provincial Dental Program Good News for Thousands of Local Seniors

Written by Communications, April 11, 2019

Peterborough Public Health welcomed the news announced in today’s Ontario budget that the province plans to introduce a new dental program for seniors living on low incomes.

“Every day seniors call our Community Dental Health Clinic asking for financial assistance to receive necessary dental work, and to date we’ve been very limited in what we can offer,” said Dr. Rosana Salvaterra, Medical Officer of Health. “We will definitely be applying to the province to bring this new program to Peterborough because it will significantly improve the quality of life for seniors living on low incomes.”

There are approximately 8,175 seniors in the county and city of Peterborough who could potentially benefit from this new program based on the income thresholds proposed for individuals, representing 28% of the total local senior population. To date, the only local program available to help residents with urgent dental care is the local Dental Treatment Assistance Fund (DTAF). DTAF is supported only through local donations, and each year the demand for financial assistance increases. In 2018, DTAF supported 249 clients, and 20% of those were over the age of 65.

Peterborough Public Health recently relocated and expanded its dental clinic, now located in Jackson Square at 185 King Street in downtown Peterborough. “Thanks to the continued support of our many municipal and provincial partners, we already have the infrastructure and amazing staff in place to deliver these much-needed services to our senior population,” explained Dr. Salvaterra.

According to Peterborough Public Health’s 2019 Oral Health Report, approximately 52% of local adults over the age of 65 do not have access to any form of dental insurance. It also shows that in 2013-14, only 32.1 % of residents 65 years and over had visited a dentist in the last 12 months. Local data also shows that cost is the most common reason for not visiting a dentist.



For further information, please contact:

Brittany Cadence

Communications Manager

705-743-1000, ext. 391